BusinessDay

AfDB receives over 19,000 applications for coding digital ambassadors programme

The African Development Bank (AfDB) has received a huge response to its call for applications to take part in a training programme that seeks to bring digital skills to Africa’s underserved communities.

More than 19,000 aspiring digital ambassadors have applied since the programme was launched on 17 November. All eligible African youths are encouraged to apply for the peer-to-peer learning programme before 31 December at 17.00 GMT, said a statement from the AfDB.

Director of the Bank’s Human Capital, Youth and Skills Development Department, Martha Phiri, said Wednesday, “We are excited about the enthusiasm and interest from young Africans about digital ambassadors. It is very important that we build upon the success of the Coding for Employment programme to take digital literacy to the grassroots”.

Coding for Employment and its technical partner, Microsoft Philanthropies, will offer more than 500 selected digital ambassadors an intensive, three-month online programme featuring in-demand skills, such as web design and digital marketing.

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According to the Bank, “a technical glitch in registration that some applicants experienced has been resolved; any applicants who had issues are strongly encouraged to try again”.

At the end of the coursework, the Bank and Microsoft Philanthropies will provide graduates with information and communication technology toolkits, as well as other resources to equip them to provide the same training to members of their communities.

Applicants must be between the ages of 18 and 35 years by the application deadline, are expected to be proficient in either English or French, and must be citizens of Côte d’Ivoire, Kenya, Nigeria or Senegal, the Bank further stated.

The digital ambassadors training is part of the African Development Bank’s youth-focused Coding for Employment programme, which aims to equip young Africans to bring about economic and social transformation in the digital age.

Regional Director for Microsoft Philanthropies, Middle East and Africa, Ghada Khalifa said, “At Microsoft Philanthropies, our Digital Skills drive is all about democratising access to the skills and knowledge that youth in Africa need to succeed in today’s jobs and those of the future. That’s what underpins this incredible partnership with the African Development Bank.

“The drive to succeed and the eagerness to learn is clear in the response we’ve had to date – a new wave of digitally savvy learners coming out of this programme will only strengthen the position of Africa’s talent pool within the global digital economy.”

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